Soul 2

by: Seal

On 2008's Soul, Seal went through the '60s soulbook with the assistance of producer David Foster. For its 2011 sequel, Seal moves on a decade and brings in Trevor Horn to helm its 11 tracks (sometimes in conjunction with Foster and his cohort Jochem van der Saag), a result that perhaps freshens proceedings up a bit but doesn't change them markedly. Soul 2 remains a faithful re-creation of classic soul, Horn applying a new coat of paint to the original arrangements, ensuring that this is a fresh, glistening environment for Seal. The singer doesn't pop against this backdrop, he blends into his surroundings, sounding as immaculately tailored as the instrumentation, never pushing the tunes away from the melodies you know by heart. While that might not make for especially compelling listening, it's certainly pleasant either as nostalgia or as high-end lifestyle music. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

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